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Posted on Dec 12, 2012 in Dear Diary | 67 comments

Holy Crap. I Wrote a Book.

I seriously searched for like half an hour, just trying to find ONE gif or ONE Youtube clip that showed Leslie Knope on Parks & Recreation in the episode “Win, Lose, or Draw” when she goes to vote for herself on the City Councilman ballot. You know, that moment she goes and fulfills her lifelong dream, no big deal.

Unfortunately, the internet failed me and I came up short. So if you’re seen the episode, you’ll just have to reimagine the heartwarming-to-the-point-of-tears moment in your mind. And if you’re not familiar with the show, well, this analogy is probably lost on you (a fate you deserve for not watching this amazing show, I might add). That said, I think you probably still get the gist. Today, honestly and without fail, feels like one of the most significant days of my life. Granted, I know I’ve only been walking this earth for 24.5 years, but still. That’s some meaningful ish.

Today is the official launch day of Terra.
The book that I wrote.


I wrote a book.
A REAL book.
Like, with pages (real and digital) and words that form sentences and an “About the Author” section that pays homage to my obsession with my dogs.
This is so flippin’ weird. In the best POSSIBLE way, of course.


Because I didn’t “just” write a book. I wrote it, and then I sought out the help and expertise I needed to craft it into something amazing. Something I honestly could not be more proud of. Something I truly believe others will enjoy, definitely like, and maybe even love. And then I went on to publish it, to make some sordid attempts to market it, and here we are. Right here, right now. And yes, that is a High School Musical 3 song reference. You’re welcome.


If you creep on my writing blog, you might have seen that I actually soft-launched the book yesterday, to ensure that everything was up and functional in time for today. And even though I got a lot of awesome encouragement from the few people who picked up an early copy yesterday, I knew that things wouldn’t feel REAL until today. Until I wrote this post. Until I made all the announcements, did my happy/disbelief dance, and got to say offically–OFFICIALLY–that my book is published. And that I am an author.


See, I’m not what you’d call a finisher. Oh, sure, I’m a great starter. I’ve got ideas and ambitions and things I want to try coming out the wazoo. I want to do and be EVERYTHING: painter, singer, public speaker, successful entrepreneur, photographer, blogger, writer, fashion model, makeup artist. The list goes on and on… and on. But all most of those things have ever amounted to is entirely too much money wasted on supplies/equipment I no longer use, and many, many, MANY unfinished projects. That’s just how I’ve always been. A kickstarter with no follow-through. I’ve got ALL THE HOBBIES, I’ve been in and out of jobs since I graduated from college–I even switched majors halfway through… To be honest, writing this blog is the only endeavor I’ve actually taken on that I’ve stuck with for any significant length of time. So I guess credit where credit’s due, because evidently along with all my self-awareness and self-reflection and general musings up in here, I’ve also learned a little bit about perseverance. Go figure.

This is my book’s launch day. THIS, finally, is a deadline that I have met. For maybe the first time in my entire life, I did something I said I was going to do. I said I would write & publish a book by December 2012, and I did. I actually did it. And that, right there, is an amazing thing. Regardless of whether tons of people end up buying my book, regardless of whether anyone even likes it, I did what I set out to do. And I literally have never been more proud of myself. Not when I lost those first pounds, not when I got under 200-pounds for the first time since high school, not when I ran a relay across Massachusetts. No, this.


I feel like I’ve been sprinting towards this very day for the past 6 months (not to mention the whole 24 years prior to that), so to say that I’m having some difficulties in processing the fact that the book is ACTUALLY PUBLISHED… well, it’s putting it lightly. Well, perhaps difficulty isn’t the right word to use, but I kind of used up all of my words when I spent 83,512 on my novel (yep, that’s the final word count. Crazy, right?) so you’ll have to forgive me. Really, the only thing that’s difficult about what is pretty much single-handedly the most exciting time of my life, is that I keep bursting into tears at random intervals as I write this post, and it’s making it rather hard to keep my train of thought on track.

Don’t worry, they’re happy tears. The happiest, really. The I-can’t-believe-I-made-it kind. The kind that make you literally pinch yourself–because even though you know it’s just an old cliched saying, you think, just this once, maybe you really are dreaming and you just don’t know it.


Thank you, to everyone who helped me make this a reality. In particular, thanks goes out to my editor and general muse, Aileen, without whom Terra would be a completely different kind of beast. (Seriously, you guys would have been retching from the amount of sappy, saccharine cheesiness in the book, haha. What can I say? I love me some cheese!) And to my brother and sister, for whom I think the dedication above speaks well enough. (Click on the picture for a larger image if you can’t read it, and prepare to “aww.”) But also, just thank YOU. You, my blog readers, who have been endlessly supportive with regard to so many different aspects of my life. This would not be happening if it weren’t for you.

If you’re interested in purchasing a copy of Terra, just click here to see a list of all the places it’s currently available, or follow one of these links:


It’s $9.99 for the paperback, and at a special price of $4.99 right now for the eBook! Support for iBooks and Google Books will be following, hopefully soon! Oh, and the paperback version hasn’t been linked to Amazon yet, but word is that will be happening shortly as well. So again, thank you. For your support, for your encouragement, and just for coming along for the ride.


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Posted on Dec 4, 2012 in Dear Diary | 21 comments

Stress with a Capital S

So beyond being happy and in a constant good mood lately, I am another thing. Stressed. Because, as it turns out, writing and publishing your first novel is an incredible mood lifter. But it’s also, like, kind of a big deal. With lots of things to consider. And lots of things to do. And lots of things to stress you out.

Now, I’ve never really been all that great at handling stress. Ask anybody who knows me in real life, and they will confirm this. Heck, I will gladly confirm this. I mean, a couple Christmases ago my brother glued the side of the gingerbread house onto the mold before it was decorated and I burst into tears and actually said the words, “YOU RUINED CHRISTMAS!”


Yeah, my family doesn’t really let me live that one down.

Gingerbread House

I’ve written about stress and anxiety before, and I’ve tried taking up some of your suggestions on how to deal with it, but I still haven’t gotten a very good handle on my ability to… handle… it. Last night, I laid (lied? lay?) awake in bed for an hour, my heart racing and mind whirring, just because I could not STOP THINKING ABOUT BOOK STUFF. Pitch emails, formatting, final copyedits and typos. Timelines and deadlines and proofs, oh my!

Okay, I just stressed myself out again just writing that list. Let’s backtrack.

ANYWAY. I was in bed, trying my darnest to count sheep and take deep breaths and not obsessively continue to check my phone, and eventually, I did fall asleep. And then I had one of those harrowingly realistic dreams where you are SO SUPER POSITIVE that it’s real life. You know, the kind of dream where you feel legitimately pissed in real life at real people, even though it’s only their dream-versions who wronged you. Needless to say, I woke up crying.

So, stress. I has it. And, in a hilarious-in-retrospect-but-awful-at-the-time kind of way, my worst anxiety always seems to manifest itself in my unconscious mind. Once, I dreams that my ex-boyfriend shot me in the leg. This was while we were still dating, mind you. So, you know, bad, uber-realistic dreams tend to lead to loss of sleep, and loss of sleep leads to more stress/being more easily stressed, and it’s a bit of a vicious cycle.

I’m kind of hoping that maybe there’s just something in the air, because Aileen’s post today was coincidentally in much of the same vein. (Even though she has much more to be stressed about than me, what with a deployed fiance and all. Perspective. I needs it.) But let’s be honest, I think what it really boils down to is just that I’m kind of high-strung in general. And I’m okay with it. (Self-acceptance is this week’s theme on the blog, right? Hahaha.)

I’m just going to focus on the positives here. Like, I’m not stress eating. That’s a big step for me! In fact, if I continue to be stress-nauseous like I was last night, maybe this will even lead to a loss, hahahaha. And in the meantime, I’ve booked a massage. Positive steps!

I know I’ve asked this before, but feel free to weigh-in with your best/favorite stress-relievers. And only one of you gets to say “exercise,” since that’s pretty much a gimme. 🙂

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